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  1. #1

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    Recommendation needed: B&W developer for low speed film

    I am plan to try some slow speed B&W films.
    I have the following list:
    1. Ilford Pan F 50
    2. EFKE 25
    3. Rollei Pan 25

    However, I am not sure what developer should I use for these films. I am also not sure about the development time for these film, cause there are so many versions online. I am looking for some recommendation for B&W developers and developing time for these film.
    By searching the Internet, Diafine looks like the easiest way to develop these films. Only need 3 mins in two develop bath. Anyone have good results using Diafine? Any other Suggestions? What about stop bath and fixer?
    Hope someone can give me some hints, and helps on this.

    Many Thanks in advanced.

  2. #2

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    For 1. search for PanF and Rodinal. There aren't many combos here on APUG that most agree on but Pan F and Rodinal seems to be one of them.

    pentaxuser

  3. #3

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    Aculux works really nicely with Pan-F. I haven't tried it with the other two films. I use the Paterson times, more or less. I think the Paterson time with Aculux-3 is 5min 30. I've used 6 minutes before which has been fine, too.

  4. #4
    MikeSeb's Avatar
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    Xtol or D-76/ID-11 will do a great job with any of the above.

    Start with the manufacturers' recommended development times in these developers, and adjust as needed--which is the same advice always given whenever someone asks about development times here.
    Michael Sebastian
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  5. #5
    brian steinberger's Avatar
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    I highly recommend Rodinal diluted 1:50 for these slow films. The tonality Rodinal offers in unmatched from other developers. If not Rodinal then definitely as Mike suggests, Xtol or D-76/ID-11 diluted 1:1. As far as development times, I'd find times on http://www.digitaltruth.com/devchart.php. Then subtract 10% from their recommended time as a starting point.

    BTW.. if you do go with Rodinal, be careful not to agitate too much. I'd recommend agitating for the first minute then one or two gentle inversions every minute.

  6. #6

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    Thanks guys, I will keep your comments in mind. Since the solution available in local store is very limited. I guess I will start with Xtol or D-76/ID-11 diluted 1:1. Also, I may order Rodinal from US later. I guess I will figure out the time once I get hands on it.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by brian steinberger View Post
    As far as development times, I'd find times on http://www.digitaltruth.com/devchart.php. Then subtract 10% from their recommended time as a starting point.

    If there specific reason to reduced the development time by 10%?

  8. #8

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    For these films, any b/w developer will work. But due to their high contrast, I would suggest a somewhat "standard" or "mild" or "old-school" developer at first. T-Max and X-Tol will be great for the shadows, but may push your high tones a bit far if you don't dial everything in. These developers are "improvements" over the older stuff in a technical sense, but as such, can be more technically demanding and harder to work with in my experience. Not that I don't like them, but I would start with D-76 or D-23 and see if you like the films at all. Afterward, maybe experiment with other developers. Rodinal, especially if highly diluted, must make these films look INSANE! Even highly diluted HC-110 makes them look rather NUTS!, and it has a healthy amount of silver solvent, while Rodinal has none, to my knowledge.

    IMO, the best general answer to any "which developer for this new film" question would be, "Whatever developer you are most familiar with, and preferably already have on hand." That will let you better compare the differences between the new films you are trying and the ones you have already tried using that developer.
    Last edited by 2F/2F; 05-07-2009 at 06:03 PM. Click to view previous post history.
    2F/2F

    "Truth and love are my law and worship. Form and conscience are my manifestation and guide. Nature and peace are my shelter and companions. Order is my attitude. Beauty and perfection are my attack."

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  9. #9
    Aurum's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeSeb View Post
    Xtol or D-76/ID-11 will do a great job with any of the above.

    Start with the manufacturers' recommended development times in these developers, and adjust as needed--which is the same advice always given whenever someone asks about development times here.
    I'd suggest D76 / ID11 as a one size fits all, solid all rounder that is a known quantity, unless you are looking for a more specific look such as that given by products such as Rodinal
    "Flatter Me, and I May Not Believe You. Criticize Me, and I May Not like You. Ignore Me, and I May Not Forgive You. Encourage Me, and I Will Not Forget You."

  10. #10

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    Just for my own interests, and when using these films, why would one want to use a solvent developer instead of a non-solvent one? What is the tonal range when using something such as D76, being that it's more or less considered a standard by which to judge films.
    W.A. Crider

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